Originally posted on heraldextra.com
The Provo-based company was founded in the late 2000s as a way to prepare teens for “the real world” — and that’s just what it does.
“It helps them realize everything they’ll have to go through when they have their own careers and they’re not relying on their parents anymore,” said Rachel Yentes, a Banzai employee.
The personal finance program is now available to Utah County teachers and students free of cost, thanks to the sponsorship of the local credit union.
The web-based program aims to teach students how to manage their money before they leave home. Supplemented by printed workbooks, teachers can incorporate the program’s materials into their everyday lessons or provide them as after school activities or extra credit.
Taught throughout a semester or just a matter of weeks, the program exposes students to real-life scenarios where they learn to pay bills and balance a budget. It starts and ends with a pre- and post-test in order to tailor the material to each student and track his or her improvement throughout its duration.
Similar to the game of Life, students must learn to manage unexpected expenses such as parking tickets, medical bills and housing maintenance. They’re also introduced to auto loans, bank statements and saving accounts. The object of the game is to save enough money for college.
“It’s a great program — I’m learning things I wish I would’ve known at their age,” Yentes said. “Everybody needs to learn about this stuff.”
Teachers interested in using the Banzai program can visit teachbanzai.com or call 888-8-BANZAI.